Posts Tagged ‘Joy Division’

Friday, November 23rd, 2012

Greyhounds In The Slips

Win Joy Formidable tickets without having to change your cellphone provider or listen to the radio

Photo By James MinchinJames MinchinThe almost-last minute free show from Welsh so-much-power-trio The Joy Formidable show at The Mod Club next Monday night, November 26, announced earlier this week was unequivocally good news, but there were some questions on just how one would go about getting tickets seeing as how it was being sponsored by Virgin Mobile and CFNY 102.1 The Edge. Would you have to change cellphone providers? Subject yourself to the Dean Blundell show? Maybe, but also no. You could just keep doing what you’re doing right now – reading this site.

Thanks to the good folks at Union Events, who’re actually putting the show on, I’ve got a handful of passes to give away. I’ve given away a couple pairs via Twitter already – if I didn’t @ you this morning, you didn’t win so keep reading – but now also have five pairs to give away here. To throw your proverbial hat in the ring, email me at with “I want a Joy Formidable” in the subject line and your full name in the body, and have that in to me by, say, 6:00PM on Sunday night.

Their new record Wolf’s Law is out January 22.

MP3: The Joy Formidable – “Austere”
MP3: The Joy Formidable – “Greyhounds In The Slips”

Whilst on the topic of joyful bands, a rather stellar-sounding Joy Division bootleg circa February 1980 at the University Of London has surfaced and is available to download in FLAC form at The Power Of Independent Trucking.

Frightened Rabbit have released a video from their forthcoming album Pedestrian Verse, due out February 5.

Video: Frightened Rabbit – “Dead Now”

Filter and Lees Music Scene have interviews with Dry The River.

Interview and Nylon talk to Kate Nash about her new Death Proof EP and forthcoming Girl Talk album, due out in March.

Blur have made another live clip from this Summer’s Hyde Park show available to watch. The live set Parklive is out December 3.

Video: Blur – “Young And Lovely” (live at Hyde Park)

Electro-soul man Jamie Lidell will release his new self-titled album on February 18 and will be in town at Lee’s Palace on April 8 in support. Tickets for that are $15 in advance.

Stream: Jamie Lidell – “What A Shame”

PopMatters talks to Pete Wiggs and Under The Radar to Sarah Cracknell, both of Saint Etienne.

Monday, October 24th, 2011


CANT, Luke Temple and Blood Orange at The Garrison in Toronto

Photo By Frank YangFrank YangOne of the shifts in the music industry over the last few years has been the evolution of bands as brands (google it, it’s a phrase) with as much, or more, equity being place in an artist’s name and identity as with their work. So it was interesting to hit up The Garrison on Friday night for a triple bill of acts who were quite consciously not trading under their more successful brands – there was one side project, one solo project and one complete re-brand.

First up and most enticing to me was Blood Orange, the new project from one Devonté Hynes. Though only 26, he’s already established a track record for building up projects and then walking away, disbanding the NME-championed punk rock Test Icicles in 2006 then putting out two records of ambitious, Americana-influenced pop as Lightspeed Champion before deciding to make his funk-soul side-project his main gig. Coastal Grooves, his debut as Blood Orange, came out earlier this Fall and as much as I was sad to see Lightspeed Champion retired, it’s hard to argue that Blood Orange is as good a showcase for Hynes’ talents as there’s ever been. The irresistible melodies of Lavender Bridge and to a slightly lesser degree, Life Is Sweet! Nice To Meet You are largely intact but they’re now driven by deep, slow jam grooves and ripping guitar solos and more mature songwriting themes.

It’s the sort of record that could and perhaps should be done justice live with a full band, but instead Hynes stayed true to the home studio aesthetic of the project and took the stage with just himself, a sequencer and his guitar. It wasn’t much but it was more than enough as two songs into the set, Hynes moved the mic stand into the audience and played most of the rest of his set in the round, only interrupting the sequence of souful vocals and guitar shredding to hop back on stage to adjust his pedals and/or sequencer and right back to getting down. Maybe the best thing about it was how nonchalantly Hynes went about his business, as though a solo set that surely required considerable thought and preparation to sound to full was no big deal at all, and occasionally throwing in a bit of flash like a knee slide or tossing his guitar in the air and catching it without missing a beat. He capped it off with an extended, Prince-worthy guitar solo back onstage complete with behind-the-head riffing and once the backing track ended, he was up and out, at least for now. No big deal.

Luke Temple, best known for fronting Brookyln’s Here We Go Magic but recently returned to his solo roots for this year’s Don’t Act Like You Don’t Care wasn’t even going to try and top the Blood Orange show. Performing as a two-piece with Natalie Bergen on bass and keys, his set had a casual, almost ad-libbed vibe and the material more country-ish overtones and certainly not as refined as Here We Go Magic’s prog-pop. You got the sense that Temple wasn’t especially impressed with the lack of attention being paid by the chatty audience but to be fair, his low-key approach and material didn’t offer a lot of reason to.

Audience attention was no problem for CANT, the side-project from Grizzly Bear bassist Chris Taylor. Now I’m more of a Grizzly Bear respecter than admirer, but I was surprised how much I genuinely enjoyed Dreams Come True, the CANT debut which came out last month. It still has the meticulousness that marks his main band’s work, but its R&B angle feels looser, more dynamic and more immediately soulful. Live, Taylor led a four-piece band that included Dev Hynes on guitar and the two would spend the set swapping instruments and enduring electric shocks as they did so due to bad grounds. But no pain, no gain and for the better part of an hour, Taylor and co ran through an enjoyable set of Dreams material, offering Taylor a chance to show off his pipes and Hynes to further showboat on guitar a little more. Grizzly Bear has always gotten a great reception in Toronto and this show proved that Bear cub projects were also wholly welcome, with Taylor telling the wildly applauding fans at the show’s end that this had been the best show of the tour. I’m inclined to believe him.

The Pitch, Metro, The Daily Cardinal and The Dossier Journal have interviews with Chris Taylor while NOW talks to Dev Hynes.

Photos: CANT, Luke Temple, Blood Orange @ The Garrison – October 21, 2011
MP3: CANT – “Be Around (Rough Cutz)”
MP3: Luke Temple – “Ophelia”
MP3: Luke Temple – “More Than Muscle”
MP3: Blood Orange – “Dinner”
MP3: Blood Orange – “Sutphin Boulevard”
MP3: Blood Orange – “Champagne Coast”
Video: CANT – “Believe”
Video: Luke Temple – “More Than Muscle”
Video: Blood Orange – “Sutphin Boulevard”
Video: Blood Orange – “Dinner”
Video: Blood Orange – “S’Cooled”
Video: Blood Orange – “I’m Sorry We Lied”

The Sun and Newsweek talk to Florence Welch of Florence & The Machine, whose new record Ceremonials is streaming over at Pretty Much Amazing in advance of its release on November 1.

Stream: Florence & The Machine / Ceremonials

Drowned In Sound are streaming the cryptically-titled A Frightened Rabbit EP, which is in fact a free EP from Frightened Rabbit, available to download over at Grabtrax. Quad News also has a chat with Scott Hutchinson.

MP3: Frightened Rabbit – “Scottish Winds”
Stream: Frightened Rabbit / A Frightened Rabbit EP

The Fly sets up a Summer Camp in their courtyard and records a video session. The duo’s debut Welcome To Condale arrives November 8.

Billy Bragg tells The Sabotage Times it’s time for bands to get political again. He also weighs in on matters political with The Scotsman and The Irish Times.

James Dean Bradfield of Manic Street Preachers talks to NME about the band’s plans following the release of their National Treasures compilation next week; look for a break and then a reinvention.

Pitchfork, The Telegraph, Shortlist and Billboard talk to Noel Gallagher about his High Flying Birds, which come to roost at Massey Hall on November 7 and 8 and at record stores November 8.

Meanwhile, little brother Liam is sounding a bit conciliatory in talking to Rolling Stone, telling them that he’d be open to an Oasis reunion in 2015 or so. Uh huh.

The Sabotage Times talks to Bernard Sumner and Stephen Morris about the transition from being Joy Division to New Order.

The Irish Independent talks to Annie Clark of St. Vincent, in town at The Phoenix on December 15.

New Wild Flag video!

Video: Wild Flag – “Electric Band”

The New York Times profiles Tom Waits ahead of the release of Bad As Me on Tuesday.

The Pittsburgh Tribune, Red & Black and American Songwriter talk to Matthew Sweet on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of Girlfriend and the release of his new record Modern Art.

And sadly, Titus Andronicus just got a little less awesome with the announcement that Amy Klein, aka Amy Andronicus, aka the most ass-kicking embodiment of rock’n’roll going, announced that the shows at Halifax Pop Explosion this weekend were her last with the band, as she’s going to be concentrating on other projects from here on. Update: Patrick Stickles has posted his own thanks and farewell to Amy.

Saturday, September 10th, 2011

CONTEST – Peter Hook & The Light @ The Phoenix – September 24, 2011

Photo via FacebookFacebookWho: Peter Hook & The Light
What: Peter Hook. Hooky. One of the most distinctive bassists of the past few decades and an integral part of two of the most influential rock bands of the past thirty-plus years, Joy Division and New Order, as well as less memorable projects such as Revenge, Freebass and Monaco. This is none of those bands.
Why: Though he’s got himself an all-new band, Hooky is revisiting the works of his first band and performing Unknown Pleasures live. Whether or not this is actually a good idea is purely subjective. It’s happening, either way.
When: Saturday, September 24, 2011
Where: The Phoenix Concert Theater in Toronto (19+)
Who else: The show has solid if oddly-paired support from Dirty Beaches and Frankie Rose & The Outs
How: Tickets for the show are $16.50 in advance but courtesy of Embrace, I have two pairs of passes to give away for the show. To enter, email me at contests AT with “I want to see Peter Hook” in the subject line and your full name in the body. Contest closes at midnight, September 18.
What else: I’m sure Hook would love to only talk about The Light and his Joy Division tribute, as per this Slicing Up Eyeballs Q&A and Gibson Guitars interview, but the timing of the announcement of a Hook-less New Order reunion has him having to instead. Or, as in this Rolling Stone interview, covering both bases. Or basses. Ahem.

Video: Peter Hook & The Light featuring Rowetta – “Atmosphere”
Video: Peter Hook & The Light featuring Rowetta – “Pictures In My Mind”

Sunday, August 1st, 2010

"Twenty Four Hours"

Versus cover Joy Division

Image via WikidepiaWikidepiaA Means To An End, the 1995 tribute album to Joy Division, is a curious entity. Though their status as legends had been cemented for many years, it was still largely an underground and music geek thing – I’m pretty sure you couldn’t get Closer t-shirts in child sizes as you can now (it’s true, I’ve seen them). And I remember a not inconsiderable marketing push behind A Means To An End when it came out – on a major label – even though there wasn’t really a single act on the track list who was a household name; at best they were dorm room names.

But maybe there was a kid out there who picked up The Crow soundtrack the year before and lost his shit to the Nine Inch Nails’ version of “Dead Souls” and actually learned that it wasn’t a NIN song and thus learned who Joy Division were and, being in the middle of the ’90s alt.rock explosion, wanted to hear their songs done by artists who were relevant to them (and unknown to everyone else, thus increasing their potential cool points). Maybe A Means To An End was for them.

And if so, then they’d have discovered New York’s Versus doing a mostly faithful but still distinctly Versus (thanks to the vocals of James Baluyut and Fontaine Toups) version of “Twenty Four Hours”. And they’d have become fans of that band through the rest of the ’90s, only to lose them when they went on an extended hiatus in 2000. A hiatus that would last a decade until this coming Tuesday’s release of On The Ones And Threes, a Versus record that sounds like Versus never went away. And then they would be happy.

Versus play Lee’s Palace on August 13.

MP3: Versus – “Twenty Four Hours”
Stream: Joy Division – “Twenty Four Hours”

Sunday, May 3rd, 2009

The Twilight Sad cover Joy Division

Photo via Fat CatFat CatScots The Twilight Sad don’t come across as the cheeriest folks you’ll meet, at least not musically. Though subsequent releases have seen the band becoming a touch more interested in atmospherics and dialing down the sonic blitzkrieg a bit, their 2007 debut Fourteen Autumns, Fifteen Winters is still a towering example of angst made audible, in deafening fashion.

And it’s that aesthetic – massive, roaring guitars and James Graham’s thick Scottish brogue – that the band brings to this live Joy Division cover, taken from last year’s tour-only album of odds and sods, Killed My Parents And Hit The Road. Song and structure-wise, it’s done pretty faithfully, but sounds as if all that anxiety and tension that was wound up in Ian Curtis’ voice is let loose in a torrent of guitar. I approve.

The Twilight Sad are opening up for Mogwai on first leg of their North American tour, finishing up this week in Chicago but not before they play Toronto on Monday night at the Phoenix. Then it’s back to Scotland where they’re working on final mixes of their next album. In this interview with Citizen Dick a couple months ago, they said that they were looking at an October 2009 release with more North American touring to follow.

MP3: The Twilight Sad – “Twenty Four Hours”
Video: Joy Division – “Twenty Four Hours” (fan video)